This is yet another time that we should be thankful that the weather didn't live up to the hype. Yesterday, we were under a Moderate Risk of severe thunderstorms with large hail, high winds, flash flooding, and tornadoes all mentioned in the forecast.
The worst storms, however, went to the north, striking the St. Louis area, a region that was only under a Slight Risk of severe storms.
According to the preliminary map of storm reports, the bullseye was over St. Louis:
Yesterday's thick clouds may have been a blessing for us, holding temperatures down slightly and keeping the atmosphere a little more stable. Of course, we didn't escape completely unscathed: a lightning strike caused a power outage in Jackson, one-inch hail was reported at Perryville and Farmington, and Fredericktown had some wind damage.
Nevertheless, we should feel fortunate that the forecast was mostly a bust for Southeast Missouri. Naturally, folks in St. Louis aren't quite as happy. Last night's round of tornadoes comes on the heels of several ice and snow storms, plus the New Years Eve tornado outbreak. In 2008 and 2009, it was Southeast Missouri that couldn't catch a break (remember the "inland hurricane" windstorm and the 13.5 inch rainstorm?). Now St. Louis can't catch a break.
After some lingering showers today, the weather should turn mundane for a few days with sunshine and highs in the 50s. Rain is possible Friday through Sunday, but it appears these will be ordinary showers instead of thunderstorms.
Earthquakes in Arkansas
The earthquake swarm in Arkansas continues to escalate, this time producing a 4.7 magnitude quake near Greenbrier in Faulkner County at 11 PM last night. This event was felt over a large part of Arkansas and may have been felt locally.